Friday Videos Want Your Opinion

More than a few of you have emailed me after having gone to see Harry Potter this past week – but not regarding Potter. You’re all talking about this commercial from the previews before the movie:

Link? Link!

So, what do you think? There’s a whole lineup of “Hail to the V” commercials, with a talking hand that’s snort-worthy the first time you see it. And I’m all for appreciating and celebrating all things vagina. But I was almost disappointed it was for a product I wouldn’t use, and one that I’m suspicious of, since it uses scents to mask and generally disguise the actual vagina-ness of your friendly every day vagina, implying that soap isn’t enough. You need to make sure your downy curls and whatever else smell like blossoming concoctions of scent.

Whether folks are irritated and disgusted or totally falling-off-the-chair amused, I’m fascinated by how controversial this commercial is. Some people have emailed me laughing themselves silly, while others are irritated and angry that “hailing one’s V” involves making it smell like Summer’s Eve and Other Natural Scents like Tropical Rain or Island Splash (which, I believe, come from the same etymological origin as “one’s almighty awful yeast infection”).

So, welcome to a rather divisive Friday Video. What do you think?


Friday Videos

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    Bibliophile says:

    The ad is fantastic right until you get to the part where it turns out to be for douche. Then it just sucks. My first thought after watching it was: “Another ad to make women feel bad about themselves”.

    The message that we have to smell like something we’re not – like flowers or pine trees – to be attractive to men is designed to make us insecure about ourselves. Vaginas are already considered “unclean” in many cultures, and this ad just strengthens that message.

  2. 2
    Moenen says:

    I don’t find the ad to be offensive or anything, but perhaps that’s because I haven’t been exposed to these things very often. There doesn’t really seem to be a market for vaginal douches in my country. In fact, I can only think of one similar product that ran some ads on TV.

    I will say, though, that “hail to the V” ranks up there along with “have a happy period” as an incredibly obnoxious, off-putting, and trying way too hard slogan. That alone would put me off buying the product.

  3. 3

    Having just read a blog post on Scarleteen about how many women, young and old, are insecure about the look of their vulvas, I am incredibly offended by yet another ad designed to add to that sort of insecurity. I’ve never seen this crap on sale in Finland (not that I’ve looked for it), but if soap and water aren’t enough to rid you of any “smells”, see. A. Doctor!

  4. 4

    Just like the flipbook, a redundant product. Any sane gynaecologist will tell you that you don’t need to squirt anything up there unless you have a medical complaint that requires treatment. Otherwise, nature does a fine job. And the ad is just stupid. Men didn’t go to war for women, they went and still do to war for trade routes and dealing with surplus populations, and when they are fighting, it’s because their brain cells have given way and the customary treatment of women in such situations is rough and abusive and hardly caring about the scent of the magic hoo-ha. So for me the ad is more lame and dumbass than offensive. Interestingly, I’m not aware of that kind of product being available here in old Europe.

  5. 5
    Brianna says:

    I don’t find it offensive, but no way in hell would I use that type of product.

    It reminds me of an ad from here in Australia from a couple of years ago. Apparently there were lots of complaints, but I find it hilarious:

    And then this one, which has come back on air again, also hilarious:

  6. 6
    MissFiFi says:

    Brianna –
    Australia and the rest of the world for that matter has some pretty damn good commercials.
    I am all for a sense of humor about feminine products because some men still see them as an enigma. When in truth they should be treated as casually as anything else one needs to purchase. Here in American I doubt either ad would fly, but I really love the second one. LOL

  7. 7

    I almost hate my initial reaction to these ads (the whole Hail to the V concept) because it’s so stereotypical-feminist, but really my first thought was “men shouldn’t try to co-opt feminist memes to market to women”. I can only think/hope that a woman didn’t come up with this whole idea of “hailing” and “showing love” to the V by embracing the patriarchal-society notion that the V is mystical, powerful, and also in dire need of ritual cleansing for its fundamental impurities.

    On the other hand, everything about these commercials, and by extension the people behind making them, is certainly on message: it all just screams “douche”.

  8. 8
    Batty Tabby says:

    Oh yes, all life is lived to smell correct for those men who are fighting over us. Never mind most of them are bigger than us and could just take what they want. =P And what about the women who prefer women? Beneath notice I guess.

  9. 9
    TaraL says:

    Agree with most of the above. Cute commercial, too bad it’s for a product I would never use unless my… No, no, I wouldn’t even use it then.

    And “show it a little love?” Really? With a douche? I can think of so many better ways to do that…

  10. 10
    Ben P says:

    DUUUUDE! – If you don’t like the taste, don’t eat it.

    Srsly: It’s not like your parents or in-laws are sitting there all “If you don’t eat that you don’t get dessert!” (Which would suck, btw.)

    The ad was almost going somewhere until the product derailed it. That’s some totally unnecessary gloop right there. Sigh, talk about selling insecurity.

    Why not market something meaningful like a gentle depilatory creme for man-parts?

    The links Brianna posted ROCK.

  11. 11
    SB Sarah says:

    And “show it a little love?” Really? With a douche? I can think of so many better ways to do that…

    And here we have the foundation of the romance genre: learning to show ourselves love by NOT using douches, or douchebags, for our satisfaction.

  12. 12
    Peyton says:

    I don’t mind this one, but the talking hands series is downright racist and offensive.

  13. 13
    CathyKJ says:

    The commercial is ridiculous – all the wonderfulness of the “V” that it talks about is passive, then it seems to imply that back in the day men loved it for what it is, but now you need to cover it up with Fresh Laundry Scent.  Cleopatra didn’t need perfume for her love portal, and neither do I.

    I’d love to see a rebuttal commercial talk about amazing things women have achieved – all without using douche/deoderant spray.  I bet Boudicca didn’t smell like Meadow Dew.

    Also, I was very bothered by the obviously face lances during the jousting scene.  Hopefully they were not doubly representative of the jouster’s penises, because then I’d feel really bad for the woman in that scene (and, yes, her “V”)

  14. 14
    Pam G says:

    To me the oddest thing about this ad is the guys fighting.  From woman centered to testosterone central.  How does that market to women?  Doesn’t offend me any more that the hundreds of misogynistic beer ads, but it sure doesn’t sell me the product.

    And thank you, Brianna, for the genuine giggle.

  15. 15

    My lady parts are fine just the way they are.  They don’t need cosmetic surgery, or bling, or artificial smelling wipes and douches.  I have yet to hear any straight man say, “Gee, honey, it’s nice you want to have sexxoring with me, but I sure wish you smelled like a chemical version of flowers!”

    However, I agreed with the premise of the video and enjoyed it up until the cut to product.  Thanks for sharing.

  16. 16
    Jennifer Armintrout says:

    They’re also running a print campaign about Cleopatra, insinuating that her political successes were due to a habit of regular douching. On the one hand, I’m insulted by the allegation that Cleopatra only got where she did because of her “V”. On the other hand…

  17. 17
    MarieC says:

    I thought the commercial was hilarious. Does it make me want to go out and buy the product? No.  However, the ad did what it was supposed to do: create some noise and make the product memorable.

  18. 18
    joykenn says:

    Yep, most of Cleopatra as seducer comes from her enemies.  She was a very clever, well educated and ambitious woman.  In those days it was use or be used and she didn’t seem to want to be a passive victim.  There’s some contemporary sources and some images that suggest that she wasn’t beautiful but was a brilliant conversationalist.  I doubt that the smell of her vagina got her power. 

    First we have to remove hair from various parts of our body (and more and more of them each day, full brazilian anyone), then use chemicals to keep from perspiring and now this.  Sigh!

  19. 19
    Chelsea says:

    Ok for one thing, I was told that using these products can be bad for you in the long run. Your body has a natural cleansing system that keeps everything healthy. You mess with it, and you can end up with dryness issues or infections. So, no thanks.

    Above all, I find it offensive to have the worth of women reduced to their genitalia. I kind of laughed, it was so outrageous.

  20. 20
    Cakes says:

    DUUUUDE! – If you don’t like the taste, don’t eat it.

    Thank God every hero worth a grain of salt ALWAYS goes down on the woman. A.L.W.A.Y.S. And enjoys it. This is why I want my daughter to read romance novels when she is a teenager. I want her to know that it should be expected and enjoyed.

    And products like this only make a woman more self-conscious about her body so that she can’t enjoy herself, and give men the false idea that vagina should smell or taste like anything less than the sweet, savory brininess of vagina.

    When they make a product that makes semen taste like bubble gum, then we can discuss taste.

  21. 21
    Kit says:

    A+ would LOL again.

    There’s a part of me that knows how unhealthy douching is and another that’s protesting selling insecurity, but most of me is just sitting here cackling insanely.

  22. 22
    H. Vert says:

    Yes indeed to Ben P, and Cakes!  I wholeheartedly agree!

    & btw, the commercial was pretty lame, imo.  I’m off to check the links Brianna posted. :)

  23. 23


    …tastes like bubble gum…


  24. 24
    Lindz says:

    My reaction to the commercial can best be expressed by a line from Lonely Island’s song “Reba”:

    Well, my pussy is tha bomb and that’s a fact!

  25. 25
    xixi says:

    With the lead-up, I was really hoping it was going to be a commercial for fabric softener, or something really mundane and not sex-stereotyped (ha! as if there is such a product). Oh well. It’s not like the creative team can do anything about who they’re making the commercial for, which is what I find the most offensive; so the Man’s Last Stand commercial from Dodge [ ] still wins the title for most obnoxious sex-stereotyped (and the Woman’s Last Stand rebuttal [ ] the title for snarky satire).

  26. 26
    Alpha Lyra says:

    Hilarious ad! Useless product.

  27. 27
    katieM says:

    First:  No doctor in his or her right mind says that douching is a good idea. 
    Second:  Check out how bad it used to be:

  28. 28
    Flo says:

    I so wouldn’t mind an add that just said “Hey, if you sweat, take a shower, your vag will love you more… and then someone will love your vag more!”

    There is a factor of hot weather, active people, and supah tight pants.  That said, this commercial is amusing.  It’s clear the whole thing is product placement.  It’s like the commercials of women frolicking on the beach smiling while on the rag.  It’s all a false idea and a push for women to behave and act a certain way.  That doesn’t mean you have too.  Too much PC-ness causes over sensitivity.  The only thing that should be oversensitive is your va-jay-jay after a long lovin’.

  29. 29
    katieM says:

    For even more history, go to the Museum of Menstruation and Women’s Health:

  30. 30
    ashley says:

    I like the whole “Remeber how important your vagina is! it’s not just for sexy times! it has a deep meaning and purpose!”  Too bad the commercial is for a douche, something women should NOT be using.  what is it with women thinking their poon stinks? like those yeast infections where the women hide in sweaters as though everyone can smell them! hello! no one’s poon smells that bad!

Comments are closed.

↑ Back to Top